Friday, January 06, 2006

Ned Lamont to Challenge Lieberman?

This off a Daily Kos diary...

...Help is on the way in the form of Ned Lamont. He has not formally announced yet, but he is laying the groundwork to run against Lieberman in the Democratic primary. I know you've never heard of Ned Lamont; but you are going to hear a lot about him in the coming months. He is a businessman from Greenwich, Connecticut.; a progressive Democrat who is anti-war, pro-privacy and civil liberties; with the moxie and the money to go head to head with holy Joe for the Democratic nomination for Senate in Connecticut.

There's more over at My Left Nutmeg.

Now, I don't know too much about Lamont, but the fact that he's a weathy, successful businessman (instead of a fringe candidate) suggests that he might be pose a serious threat to Lieberman.

For those hoping for a Lieberman-Weicker rematch, this could end it. If Lamont gets in, Weicker will probably bail out and support Lamont. He has said he'd run only if no other credible anti-war candidate entered the race.

Lamont would provide a candidacy that wasn't just one-note, and he wouldn't come with Weicker's baggage. He may actually have a better shot than Weicker at defeating Lieberman, especially since Weicker was probably going to run as an independent and not in the primary as a Democrat. The Democratic primary is the place where Lieberman could be defeated--not the general election.

We'll see if this guy is for real in the coming months, but I'm sure that anti-Lieberman activists are excited.


Anonymous said...

another yuppie from Fairfield county...was Martha Stewart not available?

MikeCT said...

I'll update what I said in an earlier thread. I'm having a hard time taking this vaguely rumored candidacy seriously:

Ned Lamont is a long-term contributor to Joe Lieberman - not a big plus in his credibility column. He contributed $500 to Lieberman just last year, $1,000 in 2003 and $500 in both 1999 and 1993 - according to Open Secrets. He also played both sides of the fence, donating $500 to Chris Shays in 1998.

Lamont's slogan: "I loved your campaign a few months ago, but now you've got to go, Joe." Or "I'm a true blue Democrat, until I need favors from a Republican?" If he is actually thinking of running, he either has poor political judgement or he's a unprincipled opportunist. The best we can hope for is an obscure corporate executive who thinks he can buy the race?

ctkeith said...

Lamonts got good credentials,the right competent people backing him, a boatload of money and he ain't a

R epulican
A pologist and a
T urncoat

He may not end up being the "one" but he sure is a strong 'Horse in the Derby"

Anonymous said...

Anti-Lieberman activists are excited if -- in the words of Eddie Murphy -- the wind blows...And about as effective, useful, relevant and successful.

(Sorry -- hope the wake-up call from Realityland wasn't too painful.)

Weicker Liker said...

This could be another "Jack Orchulli" type who will be spending his own money to run for the US Senate.

This guy comes off as pretty sleezy on Daily Kos.

Dems can get a better challenger than this guy....

ctkeith said...

Damn GC,

That dam My left nutmeg scooped you again.There's a pattern growing here,LOL.

We'll know more tommorrow and MUCH MUCH more Monday.

Anonymous said...

A complete search of his and presumably his father's political contributions for the 2004 cycle.

Also, this family is old money and lots of it, but with an interesting past.

Anonymous said...

Proper link


Anonymous said...

Lamont can raise the $$ as well. HE brought in $150,000 for Kerry in 2004

MikeCT said...

he ain't a
R epulican
A pologist and a
T urncoat

I'm baffled. What would you call a "progressive" who contributes regularly to Joe Lieberman and to Chris Shays? Are we so desperate that we need to replace one "RAT" with another, wealthier one?

Anonymous said... have no idea about politics, do you?

$500 here and there is nothing, a minor courtesy. $5000 is a real contribution. Politics is about REAL money, not a pissy $500.

Anonymous said...

I am particularly impressed by Lamont's platfom and strong stand on the issues. Puhhhleeeez. So far it's nothing but hype.

Chris MC said...

Hey, twelve grand is twelve grand. It's more than a lot of people kick in annually.

So let's be straight about it, the only thing that makes this worth discussing is the perception that this guy could spend his own money.

If the Lefties are so desperate to take a piece out of Lieberman that they will latch on to a corporate guy like this, god bless 'em. It is pretty telling about the real world viability of their (arguably, so far) principled position about Iraq.

Where is the Leftie lion? How about DeLauro? Closest thing I've seen is David McCluskey. Lefties should ask these two exactly how it is we win a statewide election by running against Iraq. Because so far, nothing I've heard or read anywhere amounts to bus fare.

BTW, Tom Gogola et al's interview - the New Haven Advocate (Jan 5 - 11 issue) front page piece on Lieberman - is well done.

One revealing bit is that he wrote the inflammatory Op-Ed piece on the plane on his way back. Oops.

Chris MC said...

The New Haven Advocate, G.I. Joe by Tom Gogola

Kimberly said...

Perhaps we should give Ned a chance to illustrate what his stance on the issues are, before we condemn him as a conservative big business guy. I have had minor dealings with him, and foudn him to be a good guy. I have heard positive things about his politics as well. I look forward to hearing what his platform is, and possibly giving him my support.

Kimberly said...

AS well, it looks to me as if Ned did not contribute to Lieberman in 04 - the latest I could find was 03. He also supported Diane Farrell last year against Shays.

Chris MC said...

From what little I could glean from the Kos posts and the web, he sounds more credible than he did at first blush.

If he can credibly and effectively articulate positions that qualitatively differ from Lieberman's, it will be at a minimum very valuable for the party.

One thing nobody has mentioned yet - just like we can (potentially) produce a Lamont, the Republicans could and no doubt would produce a credibly centrist candidate (other than sitting officials), who will enjoy every ounce and inch of support of the national party - to contest an open Senate seat.

Want to see a sixty million dollar race for Senate in Connecticut? Could be fun.

Genghis Conn said...

Could be fun, Chris. Sure beats the same old same old.

Here's a bit of information about Lamont I dug up on, which I also posted on the Open Forum.

A Ned Lamont of Greenwich was the chair of the Investment Advisory Council in the mid-1990s. The Investment Advisory Council oversees state pension funds and advises the state treasurer. He was appointed to his position by Gov. Lowell Weicker. I believe that this is the same man. He was apparently in this position until about 1995, when he started his cable company.

Anonymous said...

Who would the R's put up in the event of a tight primary race? Shays, Simmons, or Johnson won't - they are locked into tough races of their own, and running for higher office means an easy D pickup in a year that is shaping up to be pretty tough for House GOP members. Rell won't run. Every R in the General Assembly is unknown ( maybe McKinney has a smidgen of name recogntion). Unfortunately for the R's their bench is even more depleted than the Giants linebacker corps (what a bad day it was for us Giant fans)

MikeCT said...

Not sure where you got the '04 reference, but here is his 2005 contribution to Joe Lieberman. He may have some progressive viewpoints and be a nice guy, but can he pretend that he didn't know where Joe stood last year, or in 2003? Or where Shays stood in 1998? Granted, we know little about him, but I can't help but question his credibility.

For the electorally adventurous, "serial candidate" Ralph Ferrucci says he'll poll people on his campaign Web site about whether he should run for Senate as a Democrat or third party candidate. He has thus far raised $125, so ante up!

And should Lamont decide to run, you might want to pick up a Weicker for Senate collectible t-shirt. It could be worth, um, $13.50 someday!

Kimberly said...

Ah - I didn't look in '05. However, $500 is a courtesy donation. I doubt he would be looking to run if he wasn't critical of Lieberman. Why spend a million of your own money if you aren't critical of the person you are running against? I understand that Mr. Lamont is an anti-war progressive. I really think we should give him a chance before dismissing his candidacy, regardless of who he has donated small amounts to in the past. Plenty of people have an automatic donation list.

Aldon Hynes said...


If you look a little more closely, you will see that Ned gave $1000 to Howard Dean, $2000 to Bob Graham $2000 to John Kerry, and $21,000 to the DNC . His wife donated $2000 to Dean and $2000 to Kerry. Ned donated $2500 to State Central and $500 to Barbara Boxer.

As I mentioned elsewhere, he also was a major bundler for the Kerry campaign, bundling over $50,000 in donations.

As to Lieberman, besides the $500 last February, he actually donated $500 two other times, once in May and once in June of 2003.

I suspect that if you look closely at the giving patterns, you will see that he is a good donor to Democrats, independent of ideological purity, but his donation patterns have a more liberal bent.

I believe that also works well for his campaign. "Look, I've supported Joe in the past, but enough is enough"

I think to suggest that he is an "unprincipled opportunist" based on almost no information is actually the "poor political judgement".

While I haven't seen it confirmed that Corliss Lamont is his grandfather, there is substantial information indicating this online. And while I don't know how closely he shares the views of this grandfather or great great grandfather, he has a family history of fighting for internationalism, fighting to protect our civil rights and our rights of privacy, and standing up against war that is more than most of us could ever aspire to.

So, let me echo my wife's comments. Let's hold back on the rush to judgement until we really know if he is running and if he is what his positions and history really is.

Anonymous said...

Of course Lamont gave money, he's in the cable industry and he wants his monopoly.

MikeCT said...


Well, I did give Lamont the choice of either having poor political judgement OR being an unprincipled opportunist - he doesn't HAVE to be both. ;-) If supporting Lieberman exhibited good political judgement, then why would Lamont want to run against him? (By the way, it's notable that he contributed numerous times to Lieberman but never to Dodd.)

One would reasonably expect that a "progressive" who challenges Lieberman because of Lieberman's long-standing Republican Lite philosophy would, at a minimum, a) not be a recent Lieberman supporter, and b) not support Republicans. Lamont fails on both counts.

Indiscriminate contributions to anyone with a "D" after his/her name, regardless of the candidate's viewpoints, is what gets us politicians like Lieberman. It is also symptomatic of the political culture that "Dump Joe" activists battle against. Bundling $50,000 contributions to Kerry or contributing tens of thousands to the DNC does not qualify one as a "progressive" (if it did, we should certainly undo public financing of CT elections and lift all existing contribution limits - the more big money, the more progressive!). It does suggest that he is rich, he has rich friends, and/or he wants to curry influence through money. As Genghis hints, the main reason we're not treating this guy as a "fringe" candidate is is his money.

Given his support of Lieberman and Shays, the desire for some influence seems plausible to me. Maybe he didn't love those two, but wanted to chat with them at a fundraiser about the needs of the cable industry, increase the likelihood that his lobbying calls were answered, etc.

I would love to hear an ingenious explanation or of a recent transformation, but given that most of what we know about his politics comes from his checkered contribution history and third-hand information, we have every reason to be skeptical.

Anonymous said...

I was once a Lieberman supporter... but no more. I've seen the light. Just because Lamont contributed to Joe in the past doesn't mean he has to support him for the rest of his life. I'll vote for damn near anyone other than Joe in a primary or in the "real" election. If Lieberman has any integrity, he'd do the honest thing and declare himself a Republican.